LINE OF DUTY DEATHS
Roll Call of all Line of Duty Deaths. A Line of Duty Death is classified as the death of an active sworn member by felonious or accidental means during the course of performing police functions while on or off duty.
Lieutenant Cornelius A. Rourke Jr.
Lieutenant Cornelius A. Rourke, Jr., Star #299, aged 65 years, was a 36 year, 10 month, 26 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 6th District - Gresham.
On October 23, 1967, Then Sergeant Rourke was driving southbound on Halsted Street when he observed a vehicle rolling through a stop sign. The sergeant curbed the vehicle at 350 West 87th Street and ordered the occupants of the vehicle to exit. Lorenzo Bacon, 21, Richard Pillow, 18, and Ronald Turner, 21, exited the vehicle. Unbeknownst to the sergeant the three had earlier committed an armed robbery. The men were ordered to the rear of the vehicle and frisked. Sergeant Rourke was calling for assistance when two of the offenders began walking towards the passenger side of the car. Sergeant Rourke commanded them to return to their position. One of the men complied, but Lorenzo Bacon drew a .45 caliber semi-automatic handgun and turned around shooting the sergeant in the lower abdomen. The sergeant returned gunfire and struck Richard Pillow. The three men then fled the scene and abandoned their vehicle shortly after. Sergeant Rourke was rushed to Little Company of Mary Hospital by Patrolman Dennis O'Hare. Officer O'Hare had been driving his squad car nearby and was flagged down by a group of citizens.
Richard Pillow, was arrested when he sought medical treatment at a hospital for a bullet wound to the shoulder. Ronald Turner, was arrested while driving a get-away car in another incident. Lorenzo Bacon, was arrested by the Illinois State Police onboard a bus going to Wichita, Kansas. Pillow and Turner were charged with attempted murder, armed robbery, and aggravated battery. Both were found guilty of aggravated battery and were sentenced to serve three to five years. Bacon was charged and found guilty of attempted murder and aggravated battery. Bacon appealed his conviction and was subsequently released from prison. In 1974, Bacon was charged with attempted murder, armed violence, aggravated battery, four counts of armed robbery, and a weapons violation for robbing, pistol-whipping, and firing one failed shot at a 71 year old tavern owner. Later on, he attempted to shoot the arresting officer.
Sergeant Rourke survived the incident and had medical complications for the remainder of his life. On March 3, 1970, then Sergeant Rourke took a leave of absence from the Department. In 1979, then Sergeant Rourke returned to the Department. In 1980, he went on the Disability Pension Roll (DPR) due to his medical issues. In 1982, he once again returned to the Department. In 1986, he went back on the Disability Pension Roll (DPR). On September 3, 1988, Lieutenant Rourke retired. On September 7, 1991, he died from cirrhosis of the liver which he developed as a result of the blood transfusions he received when he was wounded.
Lieutenant Rourke's funeral mass was held at St. Bede the Venerable Church and was laid to rest in Holy Sephulchre Cemetery, 6001 West 111th Street, Worth, Illinois.
Lieutenant Cornelius A. Rourke, Jr., born on September 2, 1926, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on October 8, 1951. He earned 1 Blue Star Award and 1 Citizens Traffic Safety Board Award during his career. On January 1, 1961, he was promoted to Sergeant. In March, 1970, he was promoted to Lieutenant. At the time of the incident Sergeant Rourke was issued Star #1264, which was subsequently reissued after he took a leave of absence. Upon being promoted to Lieutenant he was issued Star #299. Star #8169 was his Patrolman star number.
Lieutenant Rourke was survived by his wife, Dolores "Dee"; children: Daniel, John, Linda, Michael, Neal and Susan; mother, Mae; sister and grandchildren.
Sergeant Richard J. Roushorn
Sergeant Richard J. Roushorn, Star #374, aged 47 years, was an 18 year, 4 month, 25 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the Detective Division - Crime Detection Laboratory.
On September 11, 1954, Sergeant Roushorn was involved in a minor traffic accident with a city Bureau of Transportation truck driver, Livingston McGraw, age 40 of 4934 South Forestville Avenue. McGraw was driving a garbage truck en route to the city dump at Lake Calumet. Sergeant Roushorn, was off duty, driving home after his shift at the detective division. Both men were traveling southbound on south South Park Avenue (present day Dr. Martin Luther King Drive) near the intersection of 63rd Street. Sergeant Roushorn's car was in the lane nearest the curb when it was scraped along its left side by the refuse truck. Sergeant Roushorn pulled up beside the truck half a block south and both men pulled over at 6320 South South Park Avenue. Following the crash an argument ensued when McGraw denied hitting Roushorn’s car. Sergeant Roushorn told McGraw that he was going to take him into the station when McGraw stated that he would be so confrontational if Roushorn did not have a gun. Sergeant Roughorn, hearing this took off his gun belt and placed it on the front seat of his car. At some point Roushorn became distracted and McGraw ran to the car and took the gun out of the holster. He pointed it at Roushorn and said,”I’m on this end now” and without warning fired upon Roushorn who was advancing on him. McGraw had emptied the gun striking Roushorn three times. Sergeant Roushorn was struck in the abdomen, liver and chest. He died six hours later at Woodlawn Hospital.
Eyewitness, John Cash, age 42, engineer of the 17th District - New City Station who was driving just behind Roushorn, stated to Detective Richard Disteldorf of the 7th District - Woodlawn Station that Roushorn, after an exchange of words, raised his hand in threatening manner and McGraw said, “You wouldn't be so brave without that gun on you.“ Roushorn removed his belt and gun, placing them on the front seat of his car. One of several witnesses assembled sought to intercede, and while Roushorn talked to the witness McGraw grabbed the gun and opened fire. Roushorn turned with the first bullet, and fell when the second was fired, but McGraw continued firing until the revolver was emptied. Park District Detective Virgil Poole arrived a few seconds later and observed McGraw placing the gun back on the front seat of Roushorn’s cat. Detective Poole approached McGraw and immediately placed him under arrest. Other witnesses told similar stories.
Following the crash McGraw confessed to grabbing the sergeant's revolver from the front seat of his car and firing all six bullets at him. Livingston McGraw was arrested and had a minor record of offenses. He stood trial and was found guilty of murder. On July 14, 1955, McGraw was sentenced to 14 years in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet.
Sergeant Roushorn was waked at Cooney Mortuary located at 12 East 112th Place, was cremated, and laid to rest on September 15, 1954 in Mount Hope Cemetery, 11500 South Fairfield Avenue, Chicago, Illinois.
Sergeant Richard J. Roushorn, born December 29, 1906, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on April 16, 1935. He earned 2 Credible Mentions and 1 Extra Compensation for Meritorious Conduct totaling $200.00 during his career. Roushorn was promoted to Temporary Laboratory Technician on August 1, 1952 and Sergeant on February 6, 1953.
Sergeant Roushorn was a member of the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association and the Illinois Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association. He was survived by his wife, Jean M. (nee Henry); daughter, Regina; mother, Dolly Lachapile and sister, Helen Strand.
Patrolman John Rowe
Patrolman John Rowe, Star #3045, aged 53 years, was a 20 year, 0 month, 27 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 17, 28th Precinct - Lake.
On August 6, 1914, at 10:00 p.m., William Dohney, age 16, Michael Geary, age 22 of 1240 West Washington Boulevard, Arthur McNally, age 17 of 1801 North Oakley Avenue and their chauffer, Mrs. Gertrude Meine began their robbing spree. They set out to rob elevated train stations. They would rob four stations on the Garfield Park Branch of the Metropolitan West Side Elevated railroad this night, taking $50.00 in total. Their first stop was the St. Louis Avenue Station, where they pointed a gun at Ticket Agent Howard Mortimer and ordered him to hold up his hands. They then grabbed $9.00 and fled. The next stop would be the Kedzie Avenue Station where they would shoot Ticket Agent Gustave Mentzel of 1533 North Oakley Avenue in the right leg. The robbers grabbed $10.00 and fled to their awaiting car on Flournoy Street. They then drove to the Sacramento Avenue Station where they robbed Ticket Agent Roger Kirkland taking $1.70.
By this time an alarm was spread notifying police and other train stations. The robbers were now headed for the Oak Park Elevated Branch. They arrived at the Robey Street station at Lake Street. Ticket Agent John H. Stevens, age 65, of 1900 West Huron Street, a civil war veteran, was on duty at the station. He had received the report of the robberies and was on the look out when the bandits entered the station and announced a robbery. They ordered Mr. Stevens to hold up his hands and he resisted. The robbers responded by shooting and Mr. Stevens was shot to death. He fell limp in the cashier’s cage and the robbers grabbed $30.00 and left the station.
Patrolman Nels Larsen, hearing the gunfire from the train station ran to investigate. As he approached the station, he encountered the robbers exiting the station and recognized them from the earlier reports. Officer Larsen drew his service revolver and the robber’s chauffer, Meine, seeing this fled in the auto leaving her accomplices stranded. In their dilemma, the robbers then fled on foot southbound on Robey Street (present day Damen Avenue), exchanging gunfire with Officer Larsen. At the same time, W. E. Graff of 140 North Robey Street was standing in his front yard and thinking he may be the victim of a robbery put his hands in the air. One of the robbers thought Graff may try to stop them and fired at him. Graff was shot through the right palm. The foot chase continued southbound to Warren Avenue, with Officer Larsen in pursuit, where the robbers turned eastbound. They continued to run to Lincoln Street (present day Wolcott Avenue) where they turned north. Officer Larsen was about a half a block behind. As the robbers neared Madison Street they darted down an alley toward Wood Street. It was here that they encountered Patrolman John Rowe who was standing at the entrance to the alley at Wood Street. It was now 10:55 p.m. and without warning one of the robbers fired their gun and struck Officer Rowe in the abdomen. Rowe collapsed to the pavement.
Officer Larsen by this time had gained on the robbers as they turned out of the alley. He fired three shots, all of which struck Geary. Geary collapsed to the ground and as the other two robbers attempted to run, McNally tripped over Geary’s body. With no means of escape, McNally was forced to surrender to Officer Larsen. The third robber, Dohney, continued to flee down Madison Street and was spotted by Detective Sergeant Thomas Comerford who was driving in the area investigating the sounds of Larsen’s gunfire. At the same time, Officer Larsen hurried Geary and McNally to Madison and Wood Street and called for a patrol wagon. Detective Sergeant Comerford picked up the chase but Dohney was able to give him the slip and make good his escape. Meanwhile the patrol wagon had arrived and Geary was taken to the Bridewell Hospital and McNally before Captain Costello and questioned. Once Detective Sergeant Comerford realized Dohney had eluded him, he returned to the scene of Officer Rowe’s shooting. Once there he discovered Officer Rowe lying at the mouth of the alley unconscious. He loaded him into his squad car and rushed him to Cook County Hospital. However his efforts were in vain as Officer Rowe died enroute.
On August 9, 1914, Dohney was apprehended. On August 18, 1914, William Dohney and Michael Geary were held by Coroner for murder together with Arthur McNally and Mrs. Gertrude Meine as accessories. On October 30, 1914, Meine was indicted and a No Bill was returned. On the same day Geary was sentenced to life in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet by Judge Tuthill. His sentence was to be served concurrently for his sentence in the Stevens murder. On October 31, 1914, Doheny and McNally were sentenced to the Pontiac Reformatory also to serve a concurrent sentence for the Stevens murder. Geary later escaped from prison in 1920 and was soon arrested again after committing a bank robbery. One of the suspects, unknown who, was released from prison in 1935 and was killed a short time later while committing a robbery.
Officer Rowe was waked at his residence located at 4043 North Park Avenue (present day Kildare Avenue) and he was laid to rest on August 9, 1914 in Forest Home Cemetery, 863 Desplaines Avenue, Forest Park, Illinois.
Patrolman John Rowe, born June 23, 1861, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on July 10, 1894.
Officer Rowe was survived by his wife, Sarah.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #4885.
Patrolman Irma C. Ruiz
Patrolman Irma C. Ruiz, Star #16823, aged 27 years, was an 11 year, 11 month, 4 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department. Ruiz graduated from the police academy on October 18, 1976 and was assigned to the Bureau of Investigative Services - Youth Division: Unit 074 - Area 4 Youth.
On September 22, 1988, at 10:15 a.m., Officer Ruiz and her partner, Patrolman Greg Jaglowski, were at Moses Montefiore School, 1300 South Ashland Avenue to pick up a student who had become a disciplinary problem when they were confronted by a mentally deranged gunman. The man had just shot four people, three fatally outside and at an auto parts store located across the street from the school. Officer Ruiz was shot and killed in the incident. Officer Jaglowski, despite being shot and seriously injured, managed to kill the assailant. Officers Ruiz and Jaglowski were credited with saving the lives of hundreds of young school children that day.
The incident began at 10:00 a.m. when Clemmie Henderson, age 40, A heavily armed gunman went into The Comet Auto Parts store at 1334 South Ashland Avenue and opened fire killing Robert Quinn, age 26, an employee and John Van Dyke, age 41, owner of the store. Henderson then left the store and walked to the southeast corner of the Moses Montefiore School where he shot and killed Arthur Baker, age 34, a custodial worker at the school and wounded Laplose Chestnut, age 35, a city garbage collector. Henderson then entered the school through the front door located on Ashland Avenue where he observed Officers Ruiz and Jaglowski standing in front of the Guidance Counselors office a few yards into the school building. Henderson opened fire and Officer Ruiz was struck by a bullet that penetrated her heart and Officer Jaglowski was shot in the left thigh. Officer Jaglowski exited the school and went to his squad car to radio for help as Henderson went into an unoccupied room in the school to reload. Henderson then exited the school and was confronted by Officer Jaglowski on the sidewalk where both opened fire. Officer Jaglowski was shot again in the lower left leg and collapsed to the ground. As Office Jaglowski fell, he returned fire and struck Henderson in the upper abdomen and in the back. Henderson stumbled back into the school and collapsed a few feet from Officer Ruiz's body. Officer Ruiz was transported to Cook County Hospital where she was pronounced dead on arrival. Henderson was also transported to Cook County Hospital where he died a few minutes after arriving. Officer Jaglowski was transported to Mount Sinai Hospital where he was treated, released and eventually recovered from his wounds.
It is unknown what set Henderson off that day, but at 9:30 p.m. Henderson had gone to the Chicago Lumber and Construction Company at 1238 South Ashland Avenue looking for a job as an armed security guard. He was told that the owners weren't there, so Henderson went to a car wash in the same building and sat on a makeshift sofa with his eyes closed for 15 minutes and then left. It was then that he got up without saying a word and went to the auto parts store and began the shooting rampage. Henderson had a history of mental illness and in January, 1973 was taken to Chicago Reed Mental Health Facility by Cook County Jail Officials for evaluation. Henderson had served in the U.S. Army during Vietnam and was taking medication for depression.
Officer Ruiz was waked at Blake-Lamb Lain Fern Funeral Home located at 1015 North Dearborn Street, her funeral mass was held at Christ the King Catholic Church located at 9235 South Hamilton Avenue and she was laid to rest on September 27, 1988 in St. Mary Catholic Cemetery, 87th Street and Hamlin Avenue, Evergreen Park, Illinois. Her grave is located in Section W.
Patrolman Irma C. Ruiz, born February 17, 1948, received her Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on October 18, 1976. She graduated from the police academy on October 18, 1976 and earned 1 Department Commendation, 3 Honorable Mentions and 4 Complimentary Letters during her career.
Officer Ruiz was a member of the Fraternal Order of Police, Latin American Police Association and the St. Jude Police League. She was survived by her husband, Peter Richard, Sr., age 46; children: Irma Linda, age 16, John Luis, age 10, Peter Richard, Jr., age 17 and Phillip Ryan, age 8; mother, Lupita Yanez (nee Casanova) and siblings: Bonnie Castellano, Elaine Bustamente, Louis Bustamente, Rebecca Frederick, Rita Salinas and Willie Yanez. Officer Ruiz was preceded in death by her father, Willie Yanez.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department RD #K416110.
In December 1988, Officer Ruiz's star was retired by Superintendent LeRoy Martin and enshrined in the Superintendent's Honored Star Case, located in the lobby at Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. In 2000, Chicago Police Headquarters moved to a new facility at 3510 South Michigan Avenue, Officer Ruiz's Star was re-encased in the new headquarters building lobby.
On January 12, 1990, in memory of her heroic efforts the brand new Irma C. Ruiz Elementary School located at 2410 South Leavitt Street was dedicated and named in her honor.
On October 19, 2018, in memory of her heroic efforts Walnut Park located at 3801 West 45th Street was renamed in her honor.
Patrolman William P. Rumbler
Patrolman William P. Rumbler, Star #2358, aged 33 years, was a 9 year, 11 month, 20 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 35th District - East Chicago.
On October 20, 1930, at 9:25 p.m., Officer Rumbler was off duty visiting a friend, James Purcelli, the owner of a “Soft Drink Parlor” located at 3174 North Milwaukee Avenue. While seated in a chair conversing with Purcelli, a man entered the establishment and asked for an individual by the name of James Darwin. Purcelli replied that he did not know of a person by that name. At that time, two additional men entered and ordered Rumbler, Purcelli and two porters to “put up their hands.” Everyone complied until one of the gunman started to search Officer Rumbler. The policeman, with no choice, drew his gun and opened fire, firing two times. All three bandits returned fire, piercing Rumbler’s body with eleven bullets causing him to collapse to the floor. The bandits then escaped in an automobile. However, before they could escape Officer Rumbler was able to fire one more round and wound one of them. Rumbler was taken to Belmont Hospital where he died a few minutes after his arrival.
Responding officers under the command of Lieutenant James Doherty responded to the scene. Two hats were recovered and believed to be the robbers. One hat had a bullet hole in it with bloodstains. Police, seeing this, ordered a watch on all hospitals and doctor’s offices in the hope the bandit who was shot would show up for medical attention. Purcelli was transported to the Shakespeare Station for questioning. He related that Rumbler and he had been friends for many years and that Rumbler had dropped in for a visit. Police theorized that Rumbler’s murder might have been a case of mistaken identity. Rumbler’s Partner, Detective John Kratzmeyer, had recently received death threats related to their actions taken against bootleggers. This idea was later dismissed.
The next day police answering a radio flash message that a wounded man had been taken to 2032 West Erie Street. When officers arrived they found Walter Evenow who confessed his part in the Crime. Evenow implicated the following persons; John Senow, Frank Mallen, age 30, Mary Schubert, Albert Novak and Dr. D. A. Palmissano, all of which were booked as accessories. On October 24, 1930, Judge Lyle dismissed Palmisano’s case with prejudice. On January 20 1931, Senow was brought back from Cleveland, Ohio, where he had been arrested for passing a bogus check. On January 14, 1931, Senow, Evenow and Mallen were indicted by the Grand Jury, although Mallen was still at large. On February 4, 1931, Schubert & Novak cases were discharged by Judge Padden. On May 21, 1931, both Evenow and Senow were sentenced to 60 years in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet by Judge Williams. In 1955, after serving 24 years and 245 days Evenow was paroled. Frank Mallen was never apprehended and remains at large.
Officer Rumbler was waked at Funeral Church located at 3831-30 West Irving Park Boulevard, his funeral mass was also held at Funeral Church and he was laid to rest on October 15, 1930 in Irving Park Cemetery, 7777 West Irving Park Road, Chicago, Illinois.
Patrolman William Philip Rumbler, born May 16, 1897, received a Temporary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on August 11, 1919 prior to his Probationary Appointment to the Department on November 22, 1920. He earned 1 Credible Mention and 1 Extra Compensation for Meritorious Conduct totaling $180.00 during his career.
Officer Rumbler was survived by his second wife, Sophia Elizabeth (nee Hardt); children: Lorraine and Melvin; mother, Elizabeth and siblings: Betty Miller and Rose Sagert.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #10952.
Detective Sergeant William J. Russell
Detective Sergeant William J. Russell, Star #85, aged 34 years, was a 12 year, 7 month, 17 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the Detective Bureau.
On June 12, 1909, at 10:45 p.m., Detective Sergeant William Russell and his partner, Patrolman Thomas Stapleton were on a patrol when they spotted a known confidence man. His name was George Kellar, alias “Bob” La Blanche, aka The Gimlet Burglar. The officers followed Kellar into Barney Bertsche's saloon, located at No. 104 West Randolph Street (present day 63 West Randolph Street), which was fifty feet from the Detective Bureau Headquarters. Also nearby was the temporary City Hall. While entering the saloon, Sergeant Russell asked Kellar what he did for a living. Kellar replied he had some concessions at Riverside Park. The officers then went to the bar with Kellar and had a drink. The men then walked over to a two-seated stall where they sat down and ordered another drink. It was at this time that Sergeant Russell leaned over towards Kellar and said, “Let’s see if you’ve got a gun.” The men were seated two to three feet across from each other. Without warning, Kellar produced two pistols and fired on the officers. Sergeant Russell was shot first being hit two times. Before Officer Stapleton could draw his pistol, Kellar had gotten four shots off. The fourth shot grazed Officer Stapleton’s head and he returned fire after being blinded by the muzzle flash of Kellar’s gun. Kellar was struck and fired another round, this time striking Officer Stapleton’s ear taking off some of the lobe. Kellar then got up with one round left in his revolver and fled towards the Fifth Avenue (present day Wells Street) entrance to the saloon. Before exiting he turned and fired his last round at Officer Stapleton. Kellar then ran out and as he ran across the street, he tripped over the trolley tracks and fell on the sidewalk near Randolph Street. Officer Stapleton then pursued Kellar outside the saloon.
Patrol Sergeant Joseph A. Kilgore of the 1st Precinct, who was working to maintain order in a union hall nearby heard and several Detectives who were in the Detective Bureau’s Headquarters heard the shots and rushed to the scene. Lieutenant Andy Rohan of the Detective Bureau was standing in the doorway to City Hall and also heard the shots. He was the first to arrive onscene. With his revolver in hand, he entered the saloon through the Randolph Street entrance. Upon entering he observed Sergeant Russell slumped over at the table in the stall. Meanwhile, Sergeant Kilgore observed Kellar fall while still waving his revolver. He drew his weapon and held it to Kellar’s head and disarmed him. Seeing that Kellar was in custody, Officer Stapleton went back inside the saloon. As he entered he encountered Lieutenant Rohan who ordered him to arrest the bartender, Joseph Jones, and fours patrons in the saloon. Officer Stapleton arrested one of the patrons, Thomas Walsh, despite his injuries and transported him to the lockup in City Hall. Officer Russell was taken to Passavant Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. Kellar was also taken to Passavant Hospital where he was treated and released.
On June 25, 1909, George Kellar was held by Coroner's Jury. On December 31, 1909, Kellar was sentenced to life in Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet by Judge Scanlan. Kellar appealed and a new trial was granted and on March 21, 1911 he was acquitted by Judge Kersten.
Detective Sergeant Russell was waked at his residence located at No. 517 South Waller Avenue (present day 24 South Waller Avenue), his funeral mass was held at St. Catherine of Alexandria Church located at 10621 South Kedvale Avenue, Oak Lawn, Illinois and he was laid to rest on June 15, 1909 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road, Hillside, Illinois.
Detective Sergeant William J. Russell, born September 14, 1874, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on October 26, 1896.
Detective Sergeant Russell was survived by his wife, Anna Lillian; children; father; two brothers and sister.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #2108.
On October 14, 1910, Sergeant Russell's star was retired by General Superintendent LeRoy T. Steward and enshrined in the Superintendent's Honored Star Case, City Hall, 121 North LaSalle Street, Room 505, Office of the Superintendent of Police. Officer Shea's star was one of fourteen stars added to the newly instituted memorial to preserve the memory of officers killed in the line of duty. The tradition of retiring a star number was born. In 1928, the star case was moved to the 4th floor Office of the Superintendent at Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. The Honored Star Case was later relocated to the lobby of Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. In 2000, Chicago Police Headquarters again moved to a new facility at 3510 South Michigan Avenue, Sergeant Russell's Star was re-encased in the new headquarters building lobby.
Patrolman Anthony L. Ruthy
Patrolman Anthony L. Ruthy, Star #4158, aged 39 years, was a 9 year, 10 month, 23 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the Traffic Division.
On April 30, 1931, at 5:50 p.m., Officer Ruthy was fatally shot by a man as he responded to aide Officer Patrick Durkin who had just been shot by the same man. The incident began on Michigan Avenue in front of the Chicago Public Library located at 78 East Washington Street (present day Chicago Cultural Center).
Wanted was one Frank Jordan, alias Carl Carlson, of 2140 West Jackson Boulevard. Jordan was a doughnut peddler from Rock Island, Illinois who eight months prior became a bank robber. At the time of the incident, he was being sought for a bank robbery in Neponset, Illinois eight days earlier. Jordan had been traced to the Federal Life Building by two Burns Detective Agency operatives, Alex Benson and John Woods, who followed him to Randolph Street and Michigan Avenue where he stopped at a news stand at 5:30 p.m. Jordan had gone to the library to meet his wife who helped the Burns Detective Agency operatives set up a trap for him. It was there that the operatives signaled to Patrolman Durkin, having previously arranged for his assistance in the actual arrest. Officer Durkin responded and grabbed Jordan around the arms from behind, but the latter jerked free, and drawing a .25 caliber automatic pistol, shot him. Patrolman Ruthy, directing traffic at that intersection, seeing the commotion, ran to Durkin's aid and was also fatally shot. Being rush hour, the street was filled with crowds of people and motorists heading home for the evening. This gave Jordan the opportunity of blending in with the crowds as he fled. As Jordan ran down Randolph Street he was pursued by Officer Ruthy, detectives and a number of civilians. They ran down Randolph Street to Garland Court and then to Washington Street. At Wabash Avenue, a civilian, Ernest Schaublin of 2804 West Logan Boulevard leapt onto Jordan knocking him to the ground. Before Jordan could be placed into custody by the pursuing officer, he fired off the remaining bullets in his gun. Officer Ruthy and two other officers were hit by the gunfire. Ruthy was transported to St. Luke’s Hospital where he died within minutes of arrival. The other two officers’ later recovered from their wounds. Officer Durkin was also transported to a hospital where he received blood transfusions from fellow officers. He lingered in the hospital for two days before succumbing to his injuries on May 2, 1931
Officer Ruthy had become famous to Chicagoans when he was a witness in the famous trial of the Vincent Brothers. They were tried for murder of Alfred Lingle, a Chicago Tribune reporter and friend to Al Capone. Lingle was killed on June 9, 1930. Coincidentally, Lingle was killed near the Illinois Central Railway pedestrian tunnel that leads to Randolph Street and Michigan Avenue, which is not more than 100 feet from where Ruthy was murdered. After Officer Ruthy was killed, Acting Police Commissioner Alcock was emphatic that Ruthy’s death was not in retaliation for his testimony in the trial. Ruthy had trouble remembering the details of Lingle’s murder during the trial after sustaining a head injury during the same incident. He was directing traffic after being placed on light duty during his recovery.
Jordan was initially interrogated by Mayor Anton Cermak. He told the mayor about a bank robbery on April 22, 1931 that netted Jordan $4,000.00. Jordan had a long record and history of robberies, he had also served time in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet. Frank Jordan was held for the Murder of Officer Ruthy and indicted by Grand Jury and then arraigned before Chief Justice McGoorty. A second indictment was added following Officer Durkin’s death. Police also arrested Mrs. Gladys Jordan, wife of the accused, at their Jackson Boulevard apartment. She also confessed to being an accessory to the murders in that she was armed and waiting in a nearby automobile during the incident. On May 29, 1931, Jordan was convicted for the murders of Officers Durkin and Ruthy and sentenced to death by Judge Joseph Sabath. On June 5, 1931, a motion for a new trial was denied. On October 16, 1931, Jordan was executed in the electric chair at Cook County Jail. It is unknown what happened in the case of Gladys Jordan.
Officer Ruthy was waked at a funeral home located at 1750 West 35th Street, his funeral mass was held at Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic Church located at 3528 South Hermitage Avenue and he was laid to rest on May 4, 1931 in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, 6001 West 111th Street, Alsip, Illinois.
Patrolman Anthony L. Ruthy, born February 19, 1892, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on June 7, 1922. He earned 1 Credible Mention during his career.
Officer Ruthy was survived by his wife, Catherine (nee Steele); son, Raymond and siblings: Aloysius, Ann, Frank, Michael, Mrs. A. Dolson and Mrs. V. Scylier.
Patrolman John Joseph Ryan
Patrolman John Joseph Ryan, Sr., Star #5618, aged 28 years, was a 3 year, 5 month, 8 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 36th District - Hudson.
On February 24, 1930, at 11:30 a.m., Officer Ryan received information on the whereabouts of and ex-convict, Joseph Fallon, who was wanted on a bond forfeiture and robbery warrant. Former Alderman Titus Haffa of the 43rd Ward notified the Hudson Avenue station that Fallon was hold-up in the home of Frank McGovern located at 1598 North Clybourn Avenue. The location was a Chicago rooming-house operated by his sister Mrs. Mary McGovern. The station’s Fivver Squad rushed to the location in an attempt to apprehend Fallon. They were met with negative results; as a result Officer Ryan was left behind to wait for Fallon to arrive. Officer Ryan waited inside the house with Mrs. Mary McGovern, her daughter, Majorie, age 14 and another daughter, Mrs. Bernadine Nabar, age 16, of 1903 North Osgood Street (present day Kenmore Avenue). A short while later Fallon arrived and knocked on the door. Officer Ryan opened the door and showed Fallon his star. Without hesitation, Fallon drew his weapon and fired immediately at Officer Ryan striking him two times. Officer Ryan had his revolver at the ready and was able to return fire. According to a Chicago Daily Tribune article, “Ryan had his pistol ready, but obeyed the regular police practice of permitting the criminal to have the first shot.” Ryan returned fire as he collapsed to the floor, striking Fallon three times. During the commotion, Bernadine Nabar ran outside and hailed a passing Checker Taxi cab. The cab driven by Tony Patti of 1945 North Winchester Avenue was directed to the boarding house. Meanwhile Mrs. Mary McGovern was helping Fallon to the street to meet the cab. Fallon, McGovern and Nabar got into the cab and fled the scene making good their escape.
Captain Thomas Condon responded to the scene and arrived two minutes after the shooting. Speaking with the dying Officer Ryan, who was unable to tell the Captain what happened. Officer Ryan was then rushed to St. Joseph’s Hospital where he died a short while later. Witnesses who had heard the shooting and saw Fallon escape were able to give the cab’s number to Captain Condon. The cab’s number was 5151. With that information at hand, police went to the cab company’s office and learned the car was owned by Sam Agnello of 716 West Gardner Avenue (present day Goethe Street) who had employed Patti as a chauffeur. Captain Condon then tracked Agnello down, learning the address of Patti from him.
The manhunt for Fallon began with Lieutenant John L. Sullivan in command of a Detective Bureau squad, Sergeant Sidney Sullivan in command of another squad and Patrolman James Sullivan in temporary command of a third homicide squad. The three learned from Alderman Haffa and others of places Fallon would likely go if wounded. With the blood trail left behind by Fallon, they were certain he was shot at least one time. Sergeant George Schupolsky and his squad went to Patti’s residence and ordered to wait there by Lieutenant Sullivan until Patti arrived. At 5:30 p.m., the same day as the incident, Patti arrived home and as he started to wash the blood from the cab, Sergeant Schupolsky apprehended him. Patti told the sergeant that he had driven Fallon and his accomplices to Webster and Clybourn Avenues where they got into another cab. The Sergeant then transported Patti to the Hudson Avenue station to be questioned by Captain Condon. While being question, Patti admitted he lied to the sergeant and started to ramble about taking three people to Oak Park. He claimed he lied because Fallon had threatened him with death. Patti then said “Then I took him to Harrison and Western Avenue.” Conlon asked, “What number?” “I don’t know, but I will take you to the place, because he’s still there.” Patti extorted.
The station house then emptied out, all except for the station crew, and four squad cars took the trip with Patti. Upon arriving at Harrison Street and Western Avenue Patti pointed out a building at 2419 West Harrison Street from the alley. Captain Condon ordered half the men to go to the front of the building. The Captain, Lieutenant Sullivan and Sergeant Sullivan ran up the rear steps with several other officers armed with shotguns taking up the rear. Captain Condon kicked in the door and announced “Police officer” to two women he saw just beyond the kitchen. Condon and the two Sullivans charged into the front room, shouting, “Where is he?” Fallon was found lying with his back on a bed and bleeding from a gunshot wound to the leg. They held their weapons on him while they asked “Where’s your gun?” Fallon retorted “It’s in a drawer in the bureau” as he pointed to it saying “I’m dying.” At this time Patti was brought in and identified Fallon as the one he drove from the scene of the crime along with the two women, McGovern and Nabor. All three were placed under arrest at the flat. Fallon was taken to the Bridewell Hospital where he died at 9:35 p.m. the same day. Before Fallon died he gave a statement to Captain Condon admitting to shooting Officer Ryan. In statements given by the two women, their stories were also similar to that which Fallon had told the Captain. The electric light bills found in the flat belonged to Michael Brady, however questioning of people in the neighborhood revealed the flat to belong to Charles Rafters, alias One-eyed Rafters, alias Charles Moran. Rafters had a burglary and robbery record.
On February 24, 1930, Mrs. McGovern, and the cab driver, Tony Patti; were booked as accessories. On February 26, 1930, Mrs. McGovern was held by Judge Helander to the Grand Jury on $5000.00 bond and Patti was discharged. On February 27, 1930, Charles Rafters also was booked as accessory and on March 6, 1930, held on $5000.00 bond by Judge Sbarboro. On May 5, 1930, Rafter's case was nolle prossed by Judge Finnegan. On May 7, 1930, McGovern was acquitted by Judge Finnegan. It is unknown if Bernadine Nabor was charged, but is likely that she was not due to her being a minor.
Fallon had an extensive rap sheet going back 18 years and was well known to police. On September 21, 1912, he did six months in the House of Corrections for larceny. On January 13, 1917, he was sent to the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet for robbery. On March 22, 1921, he was paroled and on October 4, 1921 was sent back for a parole violation. On April 19, 1924, he was paroled again and then discharged from parole on April 15, 1925. On January 26, 1926, he did another three months in the House of Corrections for larceny. On April 21, 1926, he was indicted for burglary and pleaded guilty to petit larceny before Judge McGoorty and sentenced to one year in the Bridewell. On December 10, 1927, he was found guilty of robbery with a potential for a life term. Judge Kerner granted a new trial where the felony was waived after Fallon pleaded guilty to a petit larceny and was then sentenced to one year in the Bridewell. On January 24, 1929, he was arrested again with two others in the possession of loot from a store. Fallon was held on February 22, 1929 on $25,000.00 bond arranged by former Alderman Titus Haffa. On April 20, 1929, his bond was forfeited by Judge Normoyle and a bond forfeiture warrant was issued. As a fugitive, a week before Officer Ryan’s death, he robbed Haffa’s sister which led to Mr. Haffa reporting his location to police.
Officer Ryan was waked at his residence located at 2447 West Chicago Avenue, his funeral mass was held at St. Michael’s Church located at 1633 North Cleveland Avenue and he was laid to rest on March 1, 1930 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road, Hillside, Illinois.
Patrolman John Joseph Ryan, Sr., born January 26, 1902, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on September 16, 1926. He earned at least 2 Credible Mention during his career.
Officer Ryan was survived by his wife, Angeline (nee Spiziri); children: John Joseph, Jr., age 5 and William, age 3; parents: Nellie and William and siblings: Alice Petrola, Mabel, Robert E., William M. and the late Janice.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #10923.
Patrolman Patrick J. Ryan
Patrolman Patrick J. Ryan, Star #4940, aged 45 years, was a 15 year, 7 month, 27 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 32nd District - Shakespeare.
On August 8, 1933, at 11:45 p.m., Officer Ryan in uniform with a half hour left in his tour entered the Kimball Tavern located at 3328 West Armitage Avenue. He had just sat down and ordered a sandwich when an intoxicated man, Peter “Piccolo” Pace, age 21, approached him and offered the officer wine. Pace and a companion had been drinking their own homemade wine at the tavern. When Patrolman Ryan politely declined, the Pace became enraged and threw the glass into Officer Ryan's face. As Officer Ryan attempted to place him under arrest a struggle ensued and the offender fought to disarm Officer Ryan of his service revolver. Pace gained control of the revolver, drawing it from the holster, and fired the weapon twice striking Officer Ryan in the abdomen both times fatally wounding him. Officer Ryan fell to the floor and died moments later.
After shooting Officer Ryan, Pace turned the gun on the taverns patrons and threatened to shoot the tavern’s owner, Edward Bergman, if he tried to block his escape. Pace then fled the tavern with his companion. Officer Ryan’s gun was later recovered in a nearby alley. It was believed that Pace dropped the gun as he fled the scene.
Peter Pace was apprehended a short time later by Sergeant William Gormley. Pace was still intoxicated when he was arrested and gave a full confession during a cab ride back to the station. His account of what transpired was different than that of witnesses. Pace claimed that after he threw the wine at Office Ryan, Ryan drew his weapon and fired twice causing him to wrestle the gun away from Officer Ryan. No records reflect that more than two rounds were fired from the revolver. Pace stood trial and his self-defense arguments were not believed by the court. He was found guilty and on October 13, 1933, he was sentenced to 199 years in the Illinois Penitentiary at Joliet.
Officer Ryan was waked at Martin J. Behnke Funeral Home and he was laid to rest on August 12, 1933 in Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery, 2755 West 111th Street, Chicago, Illinois.
Patrolman Patrick J. Ryan, born March 17, 1888, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on December 12, 1917.
Officer Ryan was survived by his wife, Helen and children: Adelaide, age 11; Jackie, age 7; Joseph, age 16 and Marie, age 13.